This is one of the most interesting bands on grind scene and I hope that most of you agree with me. I really like and admire their music, especially their new album "Life" and I do appreciate all the activities these guys are involved in. I asked Fred about it all but of course the main topic was new Inhumate's release!You chose "Life" as the title of the new album and I suppose this is another step on your 'conceptual life way'. You have been writing about life (in general) for a long time, but now you decided to put this very word into the title. Is human life and everything around this topic such an inspiring theme for you?
"First of all, if the word "Life" is the title of this album it's for the reason you mentioned of course, but also because this album (our 4th one) is the middle of our 7 album concept. The first album was titled "Internal Life" and the last one should be titled "Eternal Life". So, in the exact middle the most synthetic word to summarize the whole thing was "Life". Now back to your question. To be honest, yes in the beginning the concept was only turning around human life. But now, with the years and reflection things are less precise. It's like if the concept was dealing with the whole creation and the whole concept of what Life can or could be. Of course we stay closer to the human life than the vegetable life but the back cover of the cd shows a tree... That's not human, the back cover of "Growth" was showing the planets and zodiacal symbols... The last step of those thoughts is that maybe the concept is regarding the band's life. Aren't we writing through this concept the story of an entity which is called Inhumate? So, now Inhumate is in the middle of it's life and the band will be eternal after the recording of the last album... Reflection is open... Maybe more ideas next time :-)."
To be honest I have to admit that I was really impressed when I read the lyrics because I haven't read so interesting texts for a long time! What do you want to convey through this? Any kind of message or a way how to live?
"Cool that you enjoyed the lyrics :-). No, we don't want to give any message through our lyrics. You know we consider ourselves as a band and nothing else, we're not here to tell to people what they have to think, to do to eat or to listen to... If the lyrics are like this it's because Christophe wanted to tell those things, but we are not some messiah or anything like that, we're just some musicians playing a music they like and that wanna have some good time with some other people involved in the same scene, that's fucking all!!!"
In "One day" you tell a story of a young Barney. I do not know if I got it right but do you mean that there is no point in learning because what you learn is not necessarily helpful in life?
"Not really. That I want to say is that when you have learned a lot of things, mainly what man call "humanities" (literature, philosophy, history, etc) but also with every kind of knowledge, you realise that all the world goes wrong because mankind doesn't know how to practise really its knowledge, because of greed, jealousy or whatever... More you study and more the world seems to be a mad world and more you want to change this, but if you aren't rich or powerful, which is the same thing I think, you cannot do much. You have to change the world in your little circle, and Barney, in this track, hopes that one day, one of his sons or daughters will have enough power to be able to change really this world. And you can ask yourself if stupidity is not a bless sometimes because if you're not able to see how mad is this world, you accept it better. But that means also that you are completely under control. So you must learn to be able to choose your life, but it is a damned difficult way because you have to face all the stupidity of our way of life and you must accept main of them, even if you understand how much they are stupid..."
There are 4 years between "Life" and the previous album "Growth". Why did we have to wait for so long?
"I could give several reasons about that. The most evident one is because my personal life changed a lot during this period and so we had to rehearsal less. And that mean more lost time... The second reason is that it's much more difficult to compose for the 4th album than for the 1st one. I understand that many young bands will say that I'm telling bullshit, but I think that if you ask some oldies like us they'll give you the same answer... But we will try to make things faster for the next one... Hope so..."
What are the main differences between previous albums and "Life"? This is still Inhumate but there must have been lots of changes for all these years. In my opinion, the sound is better and musically there are more grind elements now... I mean, today Inhumate is more grind than in the past. How would you describe the shaping of Inhumate style?
"I agree with you. We are slowly more and more dedicated to grind core music, and it's strange as we were a death metal band when we started in 1990. Usually bands prefer playing slower or becoming more commercial, and we're heavier with the years. I think this comes because we're still self produced and independent. This gives to us a strength that no many bands have I think and you can see that, feel that power through our stage trance. This stage attitude is the attitude of guys that really need to play because this music is coming from deep inside them and they fight to express it, nothing's easy for us... I don't know if the things I'm trying to express and understandable... Hope so :-)... In other words I mean that we have no label to support us, so we have to make everything by ourselves and this needs a lot of work, we express this will to kill through a music that becomes more and more brutal. Maybe is this sentence more clear..."
Soon you will have existed for 15 years. Are you planning to do some special for this occasion?
"No!!!! Absolutely not!!!! This is 200% bullshit attitude!!!! Too many bands are acting like the business they shit on taking all birthday like 5 years, 10 years, etc... to release some bullshit things... We are against this shit!!!! Maybe will we do a small party, a gig or so, but nothing official. No special release and no crapy 'best of' for sure!!! We try to have our own identity, and that's not to act like all the things we refuse!!! In the same kind of ideas, we never released our demos on a cd like Dead Infection (for example) did it... When the band will be dead, then maybe will be made something extra, but until that time we don't want to loose time & money for such ass licking actions."
Grind Your Soul - Inhumate relations have been working perfectly well for the past years. You self-release your music and more and more bands do the same thing. Why does it happen so often? Haven't you thought about finding a label for Inhumate?
"I think that more and more bands do that because more and more labels are afraid to sign unknown bands. I think it's a real pity and sometimes I wanna cry when I see some labels that absolutely try to make a split with Brodequin, or with Exhumed because they know that with those names the stuff will sell more... What is this bullshit attitude??? So labels try to promote as much as they can the already well known bands and forget the small ones, or consider them as shit. And that's a reason why many bands self produced themselves... Another reason is also because nowadays it's easy to record oneself with a home studio, so many bands do that and then they just have to pay the pressing... About Inhumate we stay self produced because we don't think a small label can do more for us than what we do, and the other reason is that we have all we need like this! What else would we like??? Money??? Except very big bands like Cannibal Corpse I don't think many bands get money with their music... And that's not our goal. We do that because we like it and in that way we are also independent, so I can say fuck to anybody, no label can tell me to be cool because it's not good for promotion, etc... We are free and this no label, no structure except ourselves can give that to us!"
And you have your own label - Skull Fucked with which you support the underground. You released two great bands - 7th Nemesis and Byatis. How is it to be the guy who releases albums and what are you going to release in this year?
"Being the guy that releases albums is a real stress if things are not going as they should :-) and it's also a lot of work to support the bands into a cool way. Now about the coming year, I can just tell you that the next Skull Fucked Prod release should be a 4 way split cd with 2 French and 2 German grind core bands. That's the project. I can't tell you more for the moment as we don't have any definitive names (just some ideas:-))."
Inhumate, Skull Fucked and Grind Your Soul are not the only things that you take part in. You also organize Soul Grinding Festival. How did it go in this year? I heard that Parricide did not manage to arrive there...
"This year it was a wonderful edition!!! The playing bands were Coitus (F), C.M.P. (D), Grotesque Impalement (D), Solstis (F), Elysium (F), Censored (CH), Depraved (F) & Inhumate. As you told it Parricide had some problems on the way and unfortunately couldn't manage to arrive... So I told it was a cool edition because it was also our CD release party and 550 people visited the concert! It's almost 300 more than the year before when we had some interesting bands like Prejudice (B), Suppository (NL), etc... I think. So the concert place was full and the audience was sick as fuck!!!"
You play lots of concerts, you play a lot but these are usually single concerts and festivals. Why do not you play tours?
"We can't play tours because of our professional lives. It's difficult for us all to get holidays in the same moment... I have also 3 young children and it should be too hard for my wife to stay home more than 2 or 3 days with them all... And last answer is - because if you've already seen Inhumate on stage you can easily understand that we cannot do this all the night of a week. The only way is to propose a softer show and we don't want to. Inhumate is sick (really sick, not just talking about stupid artworks) and we don't want to betray this."
The "Life" album contains the track called "Life?" and this is a live set from the concert which you played before Sepultura. You also added live videos from Obscene Extreme 2003 and a couple of photos. Whose idea was that?
"All Inhumate works (music, album design, concept, etc...) are out of a common work. Inhumate is 1+1+1+1 and not 1+3. So there's no leader in the band and to answer you, it's an Inhumate idea. This album is the middle part of our concept so we wanted it to be rich and that's why we decided to add all those extra things: video, multimedia parts, 16 pages full color booklet... Now about the meaning of "Life?" Maybe this is the Inhumate entity real life on stage?"
Inhumate has never played in Poland. Have you ever been invited to play a concert here? And BTW I will check your knowledge about Polish scene. What have you been listening to lately?
"Unfortunately we never played there and we'd like to! The biggest problem for us is the long way... And yes we've already been invited several times!!! But I'm sure one day it will be possible and we will come to grind Polish people souls :-)!!! So, about the Polish scene??? Last stuff I listened to were Deformed & Cicatrix. I know Cicatrix didn't release any new thing for a while but they sent me they 2 years old stuff 2 weeks ago... And about Poland, I think that one of my first serious abroad contacts was from your country, maybe you know him, it's Adam from Necroscope zine. Very serious guy that always supported Inhumate and never failed in helping us I think."
Inhumate, Grind Your Soul, Skull Fucked, Soul Grinding Fest, family, children, work. You are definitely a busy person. How do you find time for all that? What is your normal day?
"Ah, ah, ah!!! Yes I'm a busy man and when I hear students telling me that they have no time enough I can just laugh... I've been student and believe it's nothing compared to my actual life :-), but I love that!!! A normal day for me is like all normal days for everybody I think, the only difference is when all other people have hobbies, I have only one: music. Out of my family and my job I'm just concentrating myself on Inhumate and Skull Fucked, that's fucking all. I don't go to pubs anymore, I go to cinema about twice a year and I almost never watch TV... Just support the underground :-)! Maybe I'm crazy???"
Christophe is a very energetic and charismatic vocalist. Is he like that only during concerts or he is just being himself?
"He is not so crazy in his "normal" life of course, but he is still making some thai box twice a week, so when he is not onstage he is still very energic :-) ! And believe me he takes no drugs to get crazy, he is vegetarian, no smoker, and never drinks alcohol, almost straight edge, fortunately he is not against sex :-) !!!"
There are many bands in the French metal scene, a few major labels and a few underground labels. You have seen a lot through all the years and witnessed changes in the metal scene. Is it very different from what was 10 - 15 years ago?
"Yes of course things are really different and the difference has been made in the biggest part by internet I think. But globally things didn't move that much, majors are still the same, making things pink or black, same things with magazines, they tell what people have to listen to and people follow, that's the French scene, sad but true... But the underground scene is getting stronger and stronger nowadays and that's cool! The French scene will rise one day (maybe 20 years after the rest of the world, but it will :-) !!!"
Thank you for this interview Fred. I hope that we will not have to wait for the next album for such a long time! When can we expect it?
"No idea... But as I told it I really hope before 2008!!!! For the moment we have... nothing for it... Oh, my God, we're already late ;-)"
Czy damy radę wpasować się w panujące dzisiaj trendy tego nie wiem. Mam nadzieję, że tak i płyta zdoła troszkę namieszać i odbije się to echem w środowisku. Mam też nadzieję, że będziemy w stanie pokazać, że scena ma się dobrze i zachęcić innych do tego że warto coś robić mimo tego, że się mieszka daleko od siebie.
Jest old school, bo nie zagraliśmy ani jednego oryginalnego dźwięku, kawałki są krótkie, jest w nich mnóstwo thrashu i punka, szczypta death metalu – to dla wielu będzie właśnie przepisem na grindcore, zmieniają się tylko proporcje. Nie boli nas ta łata, nie chce nam się też szukać innej.
Może dzięki uwielbieniu Dissection jest na Heading Below więcej melodii? Może za sprawą Testimony of Ancients znalazły się klawiszowe podkłady? Być może dlatego, że kochamy Autopsy jest więcej tłustych zwolnień? Jakoś tak to wszystko naturalnie przyszło.